Anna Stanley, the former partner of the renowned Atlanta Baptist preacher Dr. Charles Stanley, breathed her last at the age of 83 on November 10, 2014.
Her departure was a momentous loss to her dear ones and the broader religious community who had come to recognize and cherish her contributions over the years.
Despite the trials she encountered in her personal life, Anna was recalled as a devoted member of the church, and her legacy endures through the positive influence she had on those around her.
Anna is survived by her two children, six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild, who were left to grieve her passing.
Although her ailment had been undisclosed, it is known that she had been grappling with health issues for some time before her demise.
Consequently, some sources disclose that Anna Stanley’s passing was attributed to her prolonged illness.
A commemoration of life service was conducted on November 13, 2014, at North Point Community Church in Georgia, where many amassed to pay their respects and commemorate Anna’s life.
Who Was Anna Stanley?
Anna Margaret Johnson was born on October 9, 1931, in Smithfield, North Carolina.
She graduated from the Richmond Professional Institute with a degree in art and initiated her career as a Bible teacher at the George Mueller Christian School.
In 1955, Anna wedded Charles Stanley, and they had two children, Andy and Becky Stanley.
Anna and Charles Stanley’s matrimony encountered challenges, ultimately leading to their separation and divorce.
However, their union started to crumble upon their relocation to Atlanta, with Charles becoming more engrossed in his ministry work, overlooking his family.
Anna felt aggrieved and ostracized, and they began to experience marital conflicts. Despite their efforts to reconcile, including seeking marital counseling from trained therapists and doctors, their endeavors did not yield any results. Consequently, Anna Johnson Stanley was compelled to file for legal separation in March 1995.
This news was not well-received within the Southern Baptist circles, where separation was severely discouraged in line with the Biblical teachings on divorce.
In her missive to her ex-spouse’s church, Anna disclosed that she underwent conjugal challenges and disheartening disillusionments with her husband for several years.
She further accused her ex-husband of never attempting to resolve the issue, opting to focus on his priorities instead. After a protracted legal process.
Following the finalization of their divorce on February 16, 2000, Charles Stanley opted to step down from his position as a pastor.
Nevertheless, his congregation voted overwhelmingly to retain him as their leader, on the condition that he did not enter into a new marital union. In spite of facing censure from certain clerics, he persisted with his ministry, devoting his time to writing books and serving at his church.
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Meanwhile, Anna Stanley chose to maintain a low profile after their divorce. Despite the challenges she confronted in her marriage and separation, she stayed actively involved in various aspects of church life until her health deteriorated.
She remained unwed until her passing.